We have just got back from a much-needed, and long-awaited week’s break in France, where we stayed in the most delightful cottage at Magourou near to Rostrenen, in the Côtes d’Armor in Central Brittany.
Magourou is the home of Robin and Gill Morgan, and a heaven of peace and quiet. The Morgans gave up life in the UK 7 years ago, when they fell in love with Magourou and since then have dedicated their lives to restoring the Manoir house and converting two outbuildings into holiday cottages and building a business.
The project has been the stuff of Grand Designs, and I think that had Magourou been the subject of one of the programmes, Kevin McCloud would have been worried about the scale of the project and then very proud of the Morgans’ achievements.
Both the holiday cottages have been built from ruins, and the Manoir house is still not quite ready to move into. Robin and Gill live in a caravan in the summer, and move into one of the cottages for the winter months.
Both cottages are beautifully converted and restored. Each has two bedrooms (a twin and a double), and an open-plan living area with a (generously) fully equipped kitchen, comfortable sitting area and a wood burning stove. Both cottages have patio furniture and their own separate lawns. Books, board games and puzzles are all plentiful.
Beds are very comfortable, duvets soft and squishy with pretty floral bed linen. I hugely appreciated the blackout blinds in the bedroom allowing me to sleep long past sun rise! Hot water is plentiful, showers are a gush not a dribble and towels are soft thick and generously sized. All of which are important for me as they make being away that much more comfortable. For those that need to be in contact with the outside world wi-fi is available in both cottages, as well as Sky TV with all the British channels. Mobile reception is more patchy, depending on your handset and where you are standing, perfect reception is within a 30 second walk.
If peace and quiet are what you want, you could easily spend the entire week on the estate, walking and cycling (the canal is a stone’s throw). Both the North and West Breton coasts are about an hour’s drive. With great restaurant recommendations we ate well, and inexpensively.
Robin and Gill are delightful and generous hosts, and after 7 years have an encyclopedic knowledge of the immediate and wider area.
We travelled via Brittany Ferries (guests at Magourou will receive a discount) sailing overnight from Portsmouth to Caen (had it been summer we would have chosen the longer crossing to St Malo). Caen is about a 4 hour drive from Magourou, we spent the day at Mont St Michel half way between the two. The return crossing was during the day. I would recommend booking a cabin for the outward journey, surprisingly comfortable with a good shower, but do take ear plugs and a large bottle of water! For the return journey we booked reclining seats in the lounge, essential for a rough crossing if you are prone to mal de mer, take a book or two for it is a long journey.
If you are returning from Caen stop at the giant Carrefour at Saint-Brieuc to stock up on food and wine. Depending on your passion for French supermarkets allow at least an hour for your shopping (and make sure you have a 1E coin for the trolley). I especially like Carrefour’s Reflets de France range consisting of local traditional products from small and medium-sized producers (about 100 items from the range are now available from Ocado).
I highly recommend both Magourou and the Côtes d’Armor and I would be more than happy to return.
To contact the Morgans or to find out more about Magourou visit their website.
Fuss Free Flavours was the guest of Magourou.